Age management: when age is not an obstacle

Currently, the fast-changing business world implies changes in the way of making, creating and managing organisations. From the point of view of talent management, strategies are adopted to encourage diversity and inclusion as regards gender and religion, as well as aiming for multiculturalism and bridging the gap between generations.

Ageing responds to a trend in the workplace in which senior employees gain relevance by being in organisations for longer periods, by means of continuous adaptation, permanent learning and maximum flexibility. These are scenarios which can now be seen in countries like Japan, Canada, Australia and part of the European Union.

In this sense, the goal of Age Management is to establish specific actions that ensure tolerance and the normalisation of the age difference in the workplace.

A study carried out by the IE Foundation Observatory on Demography and Generational Diversity sets eight points to take action regarding the senior employees group:

  1. Make people aware of the older workers’ contribution. The know-how of this group is very valuable for the organisation, so it has to be properly used and given the importance it deserves in front of all employees.
  2. Occupational safety and health. Companies will have to encourage good habits, not just to prevent diseases and absences.
  3. Professional development. Age is not important when it comes to growth. That’s why companies will have to continue offering training to employees.
  4.  Organisation and adaptation of the work environment. It’s necessary to adopt measures that will allow to adapt the job position and functions to the age of the employees.
  5. Age benefits. This suggests flexibility, work day reduction and senior intrapreneuring.
  6. Generational replacement. Creating a career plan is crucial for succession processes to be smooth and for them not to affect the organisation in a negative way.
  7. Flexible models to access retirement. The employees’ bond to the company is not lost, and in many occasions they are called to fill vacancies or transfer knowledge and training to younger employees, developing mentoring and reverse mentoring programmes (in the latter, the younger teach the older employees).
  8. Preparing employees for retirement. It’s important to counsel employees on everything related to retirement: financial planning, leisure, health, social relations.

Age Management rejects the ideas that say that age is an obstacle, and rewards the wisdom and the experience of senior talent.